Lambda Legal Condemns Senate Republicans for Advancing Anti-Civil Rights Nominee Cory Wilson in Middle of a Pandemic and Nation-Wide Protests

In response to the Senate Judiciary Committee’s party-line vote to advance the nomination of Judge Cory Wilson to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, Sharon McGowan, Legal Director and Chief Strategy Officer at Lambda Legal, released the following statement: “Judge Cory Wilson’s nomination to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is just the latest example of the lengths to which the Trump Administration will go to erode civil rights and undermine the safety and well-being of vulnerable minority communities, including LGBTQ people. In midst of a public health crisis and nationwide clamor for systemic change to our justice system, the Senate Republicans remain fixated on pushing anti-civil rights nominees like Judge Wilson for lifetime appointments to the federal courts of appeals, which are often the courts of last resort for those seeking to vindicate their right to equal justice under law.”

In this moment, the Senate’s attention should be directed to addressing the country’s ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its similarly deadly epidemic of police violence, both of which are disproportionately harming black and brown communities, of which LGBTQ people are a part.  We urge the Senate to reject Cory Wilson, the latest in a long line of anti-LGBTQ, anti-health care and anti-civil rights nominees who threaten the legitimacy and integrity of our justice system.”

Back in April People for the American Way said of Wilson, “On behalf of our 1.5 million supporters nationwide, People For the American Way strongly opposes the nomination of Cory Wilson to be a judge on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. His extreme views and the demagogic way in which he communicates them make him woefully unqualified for a lifetime position on the federal bench. As a threshold matter, the Senate should not be processing any lifetime judicial nominees because President Trump remains under the cloud of impeachment for actions undermining the core foundation of our constitutional democracy: free and fair elections. During the impeachment trial, his lawyer argued that nothing Trump does to stay in power can be impeachable because Trump believes his reelection is in the public interest. This view seeks to legitimize his effort to rig the 2020 elections. Moreover, it eliminates the most important constitutional protection against a lawless executive: impeachment and removal. When the Senate majority voted to bar witnesses and end the trial prematurely, they accepted this frightening and dangerous distortion of our Constitution. The sham trial made clear that Senate Republicans cannot be trusted to adequately vet judicial nominations, because their agenda is diametrically opposed to the goals of a properly functioning judicial system.”


Read Lambda Legal’s letter to the Senate opposing Wilson’s nomination.